10 reasons your meals suck
If I had a dollar for every time someone told me some negative thing about cooking which they believed related to their life only. I’d be a gazillionaire. So before we get started on these 10 reasons why your meals suck (and what to do about them), lemme lay a few truths for you in plain English.
Let’s begin with some truth bombs.
- You can cook. You’ve had decades of experience with food and within there somewhere is a person who knows what they like and don’t like.
If you’re new to needing to cook for yourself, a good place to start is with learning how to make rice, a roast chicken, a dip and roasted potatoes.
- You do have time. There is always time. Maybe you don’t have enough time to milk the cow yourself or bake sourdough, but do have time time to boil some eggs? Do you have 30 minutes for the oven to do the cooking for you? While I understand life these days is busy, too busy in fact. This becomes a choice and a reallocation of priorities. Scrolling Instagram for 10 minutes could be better spent prepping some basic veggies. There is a point however where you really don’t have the time and I’ll never negate that, I’ve been there. In those times we can lean on suppliers who can deliver us pre-made food but everything comes with a cost.
- Healthy food can taste amazing. I’m known for turning the most stubborn veggie hater into a cabbage salad or brussels sprout lover. Usually I do this with the most f-off delicious dressing. A dressing SO GOOD that it stands on its own. One of my faves is a nutty satay.
- Cooking doesn’t need to be boring or feel like a chore. I feel like humans are hard wired to love food. We need it for survival. I know there are people out there that aren’t that jazzed about food and I guess there’s emotions involved in that – so I’m not talking to that group specifically. But the rest of us…. find what excites you. Buy the epic sheeps haloumi or the fancy 2 minute noodles or the epic strawberries. I also recommend not cooking specifically for your kids (or anyone else), cooking for you in mind first, get your mojo back – then go forth.
Of course everyone’s life is different and it’s a nuanced situation but there’s always a way and you will make time for whatever you decide is important.
The hardest part is working out what’s important and sticking to it. I’m going to guess if you’re here, you know eating well and boosting your cooking skills is essential for living a well life without reliance on doctors and the healthcare system.
So strap yourself in and let’s get to it: 10 reasons why your meals suck
10 reasons why your meals suck
1.You’re not tasting your meal before you serve it
You go from pan to plate without a blink.
Not a thought for salt, pepper, herbs, spices, olive oil, a squeeze-o-lemon, maybe some splashy sheep feta.
Salt, olive oil and acid are your friend here. Especially if you’re short on time.
2. You’re using old ingredients / unseasonal produce / you buy from the supermarket
Fresh produce = more flavour.
Old produce = less flavour.
Unseasonable produce = more expensive for you.
Seasonal produce = you guessed it, the food jackpot – cheap + delicious.
3. You’re following someone else’s ‘diet rules’ that are cock blocking your kitchen mojo
That voice who says “add a bit more cumin”. But you’re shit scared to do so because cumin has moved from the HOT to NOT list and there’s some Wellness Warrior out there parroting rules about your self care regime.
Drop it like it’s hot. I’m all for health, but not for rules, regulations, dogma.
Real food is the best place to start, from there you can amend what works for you.
Tuning in with your bod is essential, it takes practice though. Like that voice that says ‘don’t have another coffee but you do anyway’. It takes you to listen to it and act on it, then it gets stronger.
Your body might also give you clues too. Bloating, pain, tired and the rest of it – it can be your food not agreeing with you. Overtime you learn your bodies signals.
4. You’re not excited to cook it
Heyyyyy if you’re not excited to cook it, how are you ever going to make that chicken breast taste good? Try this: think about what food excites you and go from there.
Pasta? Make the meanest bolognese with the simplest of simple tomato sauce, divide mince into meatballs and pop it in the pan to slowly poach while you cook your sauce.
Crispy whole chicken? Roast that bird.
EPIC salad? Now you’re talking my language.
5. You’re not thinking / not connected in / not paying attention / scrolling / watching something
You white knuckling that recipe, holding on for dear life of failure isn’t going to get you very far. Release your death grip and repeat after me: I’m a badass in the kitchen. I can’t f**k this up.
Until you get comfy taking up space in your kitchen, distractions are everywhere because you don’t want to be there. But some tunes on, do a little hip wiggle, maybe even a 2-step. Have some fun and remove those stresso vibes. Things will get easier.
6. You’re over-thinking, second guessing, Judge Judying your plate and you haven’t even cooked it yet
Hmmmmmmm this one is the main kitchen archetype I see. You’re not alone. Things can be easier. Repeat after me: I’m a badass in the kitchen. I can’t f**k this up.
Now, before you go over thinking what temperature to put the oven on. Take 3 breaths. Everything will be OK, because:
Cooking is human, it’s within you. Use the force Luke.
7. You buy the same ingredients over and over, you’re uninspired to cook them
Kind of like point 4. You’ve got to be excited.
If you’re on the chicken and broccoli bandwagon. Just know, broccolini does exist and it’s 10 times better.
I also suggest for you young Kitchen Jedi – look to a farmers market or even Harris Farm / fruit market. You may find interesting produce that your local just doesn’t have, this can help get out of your flavour rut.
8. You never invest in fresh herbs. $3 a pack! WTF!
Herbs are your best friend. Email me, I’ll give you the $3 if I have to, if it’s going to help you realise they’re worth your dime.
Use your herbs without abandon. Go crazy. In a salad, I use them as a lettuce leaf / leafy greens addition. You’re welcome.
9. You follow a recipe to a T and leave no room for your cooking mojo to shine
Similar to point 3 but a bit different. Indeed you’re cock blocking your kitchen mojo. BIG TIME.
This is part over thinker too.
You most likely believe you’re either born with the cooking gene or not and there’s no 2 ways about it.
I double dare you to start with some of the basics, the building blocks of a meal. Maybe a pot of yellow rice and the best darn dressing you can whizz up in your blender, roast up a tray of crispy sweet potato and see where your imagination takes you…. maybe to some flavour bombs. Need some help with your flavour bombs? Download this free guide – Get Your Shit Together.
10. You expect something from nothing
You’re like a moody teenager in the kitchen. You do nothing and for some reason are still surprised when you serve up a plate of bland shit. Come ON!
This is your choice. You can choose again. Once again….
This is your choice. You can choose again.
Find a recipe, remember you’re a badass and get to creating.
My senses tell me you really want to cook too. You thinks it’s easier to stay in the place of hating the cooking, instead of tying up your shoe laces and giving it a crack. Maybe you’re scared of how good you can be? Don’t worry, I’m not about your kitchen hours being long and gruelling.
We cook, we eat, we get on with our life. Ready when you are.
How about meal ideas to last you 3 lifetimes?
Download The Meal Matrix. It’s free.